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FAN THE FIRE
M A G A Z I N E
PLUS TIJUANA PANTHERS INTERVIEW FRANKMUSIK, THE TEMPER TRAP AND MSTRKRFT ALBUM REVIEWS THE INVENTION OF LYING AND SURROGATES PREVIEWS MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT AND THE UGLY TRUTH REVIEWS ART BY MICHAEL WANDELMAIER AND STYLE BY MARQUIS MONTES
THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL FILM OF THE MODERN ERA, TURNS OUT, COULD BE ONE OF THE FINEST
FAN THE FIRE
M A G A Z I N E
EDITOR SAM BATHE SAM.BATHE@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
FEATURES WRITER MARTIN ROBERTS MARTIN.ROBERTS@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
ART & DESIGN SAM BATHE
FEATURES WRITER DAN HOPCHET DAN.HOPCHET@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
STAFF WRITER PATRICE JACKSON PATRICE.JACKSON@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
EDITORIAL ASSISTANT EVA ALEXANDRA LIU EVA.LIU@FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE.COM
ONLINE PUBLISHING ASSISTANT MICHAEL EVANS CONTRIBUTORS VALERIE BOULET, GEORGE BROOKS, JONATHAN GREEN, ROB HENNEBERRY, JOSE ENRIQUE MONTES HERNANDEZ, TEMOOR IQBAL, STEVE SHI, MICHAEL WANDELMAIER & WE BARBARIANS
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MUSIC 12 14 15 INTERVIEW TIJUANA PANTHERS ALBUM REVIEWS ALBUM ROUND-UP 1, INCLUDING FRANKMUSIK, THE TWANG & THE TEMPER TRAP ALBUM ROUND-UP 2, INCLUDING MSTRKRFT, TOMMY SPARKS & THE DEAD WEATHER FILM 16 18 20 23 24 25 26 27 29 30 PREVIEWS SURROGATES THE INVENTION OF LYING 2012 REVIEWS ANTICHRIST THE UGLY TRUTH MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT PUBLIC ENEMIES LAND OF THE LOST IMAGINE THAT DVD REVIEWS DVD ROUND-UP, INCLUDING WATCHMEN, KNOWING & FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS ART 32 FEATURE BRAVE NEW WORLD STYLE 38 FEATURES SOMEWHERE UNDER THE RAINBOW
AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 5
Marquis Montes have caused a stir many photographers could only dream of. Enjoy the issue Working as solo freelance photographers before forming a partnership in their native Montreal. Concentrating their efforts in style photography.. Whether we liked it or not. they are at the beginning of what promises to be an exciting career and already two signature shoots down the line. please get in touch. they feed off each other to produce imagery revelling in both their strengths. We also preview new graphic novel adaptation Surrogates. Find out what we thought in our film section along with reviews of rom-com The Ugly Truth. French gangster movie Mesrine: Killer Instinct. but this month has been particularly busy. to tell a story and evoke something more than simply beauty. our advertising media pack is now up to date.Antichrist was always going to steal this month’s cover. The Temper Trap and MSTRKRFT. our club night Friday Night Fist Fight is back again.COM Sam Bathe 6 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . We also check out new albums from Frankmusik. already boast an EP reminiscent of a surf-influenced Strokes. The Twang. As for this month in the entertainment industry. Having completed their degrees only a few years ago. at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. This month we’re also giving away copies of Flight Of The Conchords: Season 2. it’s an equally busy four weeks ahead. ” CONTRIBUTOR OF THE MONTH There’s never a quiet month in the Fan the Fire offices. Antichrist was always going to steal this month’s cover. Land Of the Lost and Imagine That. if not the awards. Antichrist garnered all the press. critics are generally split down the middle declaring it either a masterpiece or an atrocity. The most controversial film in years. but most importantly. A team in work and in life. On the audio side we chat to latest LA export Tijuana Panthers. but in particular. setting an impossibly high bar for newcomers hoping to break in on their direction. FIND MORE OF MARQUIS MONTES’ STUNNING PHOTOGRAPHY AT MARQUISMONTES.. Ricky Gervais’ The Invention Of Lying and the world-ending 2012. under the name Marquis Montes.. so if you’re interested in reaching our expansive readership across the very latest of platforms. starring Bruce Willis. each making waves in their respective field for inspiring and imaginative work. Our iPhone app now in the iTunes store we’ve had a tonne of follow-up work to be getting on with. now settled monthly at Catch in east London. they work not only on esthetics. Canada. on concept. Valerie Boulet and Jose Enrique Montes Hernandez are two of the most exciting minds in the fashion game.EDITOR’S LETTER “ .. On the style and art fronts we have great features from brilliant illustrator Michael Wandelmaier and photographer pairing Marquis Montes. whom despite their fresh faces. With scenes of graphic sexual violence and a tormenting narrative only Lars von Trier could accomplish.
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E2 8DA CATCH AT .COM ARTWORK BY JAMES JIRAT PATRADOON 22 KINGSLAND ROAD SHOREDITCH LONDON.FAN THE FIRE MAGAZINE & CLUB MIRROR KISSES PRESENTS FRIDAY NIGHT FIST FIGHT ELECTRONICA // POST-PUNK // NEW WAVE FRIDAY 24TH JULY FREE ENTRY! 9PM 2AM TO DJs BIG SHADOWSTEP (SUPERFILTH) EVA LAS VEGAS (BUTTONED DOWN DISCO) SOI SOI (BUTTONED DOWN DISCO) ZAPP BRANNIGAN (MIRROR KISSES) CLUBMIRRORKISSES.
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next year don’t be surprised if their track is the sound of the summer. recently took a little time out to finish up new tracks for their album. autoKratz still have a lot going for them and are more than worth checking out. whom after touring almost every London club at the start of the year. 7 compilation and being booked for festivals across the summer. 8. front-woman Tigs was very frustrating in both vocal performance and on-stage demeanour. Playing almost non-stop to try and pack in as many tracks as possible. Two Door Cinema Club somehow remain unsigned. YOU CAN LISTEN TO MORE TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB AT MYSPACE. but the real attraction were the live performances on offer. From the stunning ‘Doubt’ to Maison compilation offering ‘Counterpoint’. it’s no surprise Bloc Party plucked Delphic out to support them for their recent Olympia dates. Delphic. blending their tracks seamlessly.. But don’t expect that to last for long. autoKratz worked the crowd into a frenzy with their pumping rave-disco sound. First up were Chew Lips. London. proving a fitting end to the electro affair. Their jerky riffs are a sound far beyond the clichéd indie bands bogging down the industry at the moment. Though their music doesn’t have quite the emphatic power of peers The Whip. Last of the major acts on the night was We Have Band. and though we were expecting a lot from this London three-piece. the band’s New-Order-esque electro went down a storm. despite being featured on Kitsuné’s Maison vol.BEST OF THE BLOG Listen To More. Two Door Cinema Club MUSIC Live Review: Kitsuné Maison at Scala To celebrate the release of the next instalment in their amazing Maison compilations. and while this time around ‘Something Good Can Work’ might have been a small scale event. Two Door Cinema Club’s indie pop electronica is effortlessly uplifting and makes you want to get up on your feet and dance. on Saturday 20th June. You’ll be seeing a lot from Delphic in the coming months.. Put on in association with Neon Noise Project. Headliners for the night. whom themselves never really make the breakthrough they deserved. The recent Kitsuné interaction also brought a single release on the cool French electro label. Despite looking like he needed to dash to the bathroom for the entire set. on the rise. and on Kitsuné’s own label. Kitsuné took over Scala. bar single ‘Solo’. the future is looking very bright indeed. in between the bands much-hyped DJ duo Aeroplane spun electro tracks from throughout the decades. MUSIC Out of Bangor.COM/TWODOORCINEMACLUB 10 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . Breakthrough single ‘Hear It In The Cans’ was always going to steal the show but the rest of their music is far from lagging behind. Russell on synth and laptop/ mixer set the beat for vocalist David to jump about and scream out the band’s minimalistic lyrics. were a completely different story. and with a refreshingly entertaining EP under their belts. Hopefully it isn’t too long until Maison Vol. Northern Ireland. however.
Since it’s release on DVD. we’re in July. the show has found a cult following similar to Freak And Geeks. some of the situations Steven finds himself in will have you in tears as the show manages to stay relatable. if you check your calendar. Starring many of the actors now propping up Apatow’s ever successful film productions. Experiencing the trials and tribulations of freshman life. The Wire and Freaks And Geeks. New seasons of True Blood and Entourage are doing their best fill the gap but over a whole week. In the coming weeks we’ll check out How I Met Your Mother. Jason Segel also plays a minor character and along the way there are cameos from Ben Stiller. after being hyped up over the summer. Undeclared. which was also unjustifiably cancelled after one season like Undeclared.COM/BLOG Waiting For The Fall: Undeclared Every year. still undeclared on his major study. The finest of America’s new shows. Or to be honest. but he’s suitably aided by Baruchel and the supporting cast. Undeclared follows the life of Steven Karp. crash down on the schedules from September and October as eager viewers search for their latest obsession. we’re now left with the summer schedule. Initially Undeclared struggled to find an audience on TV. but this is certainly more of a cruder offering. a bright summer’s day. Martin Starr and Kyle Gass. and is just the thing for a dingy summer’s day. and Fox cited poor ratings for it’s cancellation in 2002. we’ll be working our way through shows we’ve missed over the years and have only now found the time to catch up on. they’re struggling to make up for what is usually a strong line-up every night as winter draws in. however. bar LOST’s now January season premières. TV ART STYLE AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 11 . Undeclared is suitably packed with the humour that has made Apatow such a big draw at the box office. Seth Rogen plays Steven’s geeky dorm-mate Ron.FANTHEFIREMAGAZINE. Sadly. Hitting audiences with its honesty. but first Judd Apatow’s second TV breakthrough. during his first year at college. played by a remarkably young looking Jay Baruchel. After January’s new shows and the conclusion to last year’s big hitters earlier in the year. After his work in Freaks And Geeks. To stave off the need for fall fever. Undeclared feels like it paved the way for current underrated show Greek. Will Ferrell. Adam Sandler. the TV-loving public waits with baited breath to see what the fall will bring.
MUSIC The latest Long Beach export owe a debt to Mexico for their name but this is one surf-influenced trio well at home in the thriving local LA music scene WORDS SAM BATHE Border Patrol 12 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 .
the port city has a thriving creative community and vibrant music scene. indie surf rock is back for good. Tijuana Panthers’ laid back attitude might prove irk “ The name came out of a story my neighbor told me. and the centre of it all seems to be Long Beach. still certainly a band finding their feet in music. Long Beach has done it again. they’re still delighted when the invitation of a house party comes along. and the early 1970’s. future plans are still somewhat up in the air. explains Phil. even playing a cover of one of their tracks at a recent show. the Panthers have an effortless confidence and nonchalance to their music that gives it such energy and vibrancy. not simply filling their bank account. Chad works the everpopular graveyard shift at a restaurant and flies planes when he gets the chance and Daniel works some. ” panther.FEATURE WE CERTAINLY HAVEN’T exclusively featured bands from the Los Angeles area but given the thriving music scene on the west coast. the three-piece all still hold down full time jobs. THEIR DEBUT EP AND single ‘Creature’ recently hit stores in their local area and online via iTunes but beyond that. “We are going to release a few other new recordings either as singles or maybe a full length”. It involved him. To some. New songs are steadily rolling out online and with bands like The Soft Pack talking up the three-piece so highly. it’s obvious fans’ excitement is more than justified. but it’s refreshing to see three musicians driven by their music. a shiv and the early 1970s. In fact for the moment. bringing us Cold War Kids and much hyped up and coming bands Deep Sea Diver and We Barbarians in the last few years. in Phil’s words. While they cram gigs and recording sessions into their free time. a shiv. they’re certainly making a case for it. however. Coined from a neighbour’s Tijuana tale involving a black porcelain at. Tijuana. not just in their homely California. Just south of LA. the Tijuana Panthers are an exciting three-piece confirming once and for all. TIJUANA PANTHERS’ DEBUT EP IS AVAILABLE NOW ON ITUNES AND VIA THE BAND’S MYSPACE PAGE AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 13 . Tijuana Panthers are next on the verge of a major breakthrough. They are. Phil is a high school art teacher. a black porcelain panther. Sounding some thing like a Link Wray influenced Strokes. “the happiest place on earth”. indeed for a band with so much talent they could and should undoubtedly be making waves across the US. but beyond that how they move forward is pretty fluid.
ALBUM REVIEWS DAN BLACK ‘UN’ RELEASED Out now Since the break-up of indie pencil pushers The Servant. Frank has got a real chance of making it in the long term but ‘Complete Me’ all too superficial for him to make his case just yet and could have done with a producer to throw a little grit into the mix. and while it is an improvement. has found a much needed lnew ease of live with his solo project. if not inventive. albeit without the piano and arrogance. so hopefully a third might never make it to release. still devout of any imagination or witty writing to the point the record grows actively boring before the first track is even complete. The end result is a multi-layered reverberating LP that’ll wrap you up in one listen. ★★★★★ THE TEMPER TRAP ‘CONDITIONS’ RELEASED August 10 Aggrivated by frontman Chris Martin. With regret. The cover art really says it all. boasting his. Black could go a long way. This second album. but catchy lyrics. with this new direction. It might not be as euphoric as it should be and at times Black certainly goes easy on the back beats but with tracks like ‘Alone’ and ‘Pump My Pumps’. ★★★★★ THE TWANG ‘JEWELLERY QUARTER’ RELEASED August 3 The fact The Twang made it big off their awful debut ‘Love It When I Feel Like This’ is as much an indictment of the state of NME as it is the British public’s mindless desire to follow the latest cool trend of band with a northern accent. when Vicent Frank wrote and recorded debut EP ‘Frankisum’ in his Croydon flat no one would have guessed he’d soon be a highflier on BBC’s Sound of 2009 poll. frontman Dan Black. was the chance to really prove their worth. effortlessly sweeping from the first to last track. therefore. they still have nothing on fellow Yorkshiremen The Arctic Monkeys. instead boasting a pounding drum beat and multiple guitars. many a critic have likened The Temper Trap to the British band. breakthrough single ‘Heavyweight Champion Of The World’ was the making of this Sheffield six-piece. ★★★★★ REVEREND & THE MAKERS ‘A FRENCH KISS IN THE CHAOS’ Reverend & The Makers could have released debut album ‘The State Of Things’ RELEASED as a one-track LP and it wouldn’t have made a jot of difference. ★★★★★ FRANKMUSIK ‘COMPLETE ME’ RELEASED August 3 A bedroom music projects that got a whole lot bigger than anyone expected. a large chunk of the music-loving public have grown to hate the now meteoric Coldplay. Even the band July 27 will admit. ★★★★★ 14 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . ‘Conditions’ may lack signature riffs that’ll hook you in for the long term but that’s a minor quible. taking their fame nationwide. ‘Jewellery Quarter’ is sadly no better. the one promising talent. therefore. With spikey electro tracks like ‘3 Little Words’ and ‘Gotta Boyfriend’. ‘Un’ is a fresh electro-pop album tinged with dirthy hip-hop that gives it an edge different to the recent ‘80s throwbacks. Public reaction to The Twang’s sophomore surely won’t match that of their debut.
Tommy Sparks’ self-titled record plays in fits and starts aside the real headline makers dotted throughout. ‘Horehound’ is grungey gothic rock as you’d expect boasting White’ trademark scaling riffs at every turn. ★★★★★ PHOENIX ‘WOLFGANG AMADEUS PHOENIX’ RELEASED Out now Growing up in Paris’ afluent suburb Versailles might not be the usual place for the foundation of amazing music but after Air. however. Far from it. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 15 . however. itself reminiscent of Gnarles Barkley. could do with a little work and at several points lies on the brink of falling into repetition and mediocrity. she certainly has a lot to say and displays maturity far beyond her years. Now on their fourth studio album. Jack Lawrence. The latest adventure brings The Kills’ Alison Mosshart. Sparks’ potential is obvious and singles ‘She’s Got Me Dancing’ and ‘I’m A Rope’ show an aptitude for knowing what makes a great catchy pop track but the stuff either side isn’t really up to much. Tracks like ‘Click Click’ are back to the norm. they’re not awful. They share a few parallels with British band The Hoosiers. QOTSA’s Dean Fertita and previous contributor in The Raconteurs. and starting this latest LP with get-up-and-dance tracks ‘Listomania’ and ‘1901’ you can really easily get in the mood for what is very pleasing album. From Daft Punk-esque ‘1000 Cigarettes’ to single ‘Heartbreaker’. Daft Punk and Phoenix. ★★★★★ THE DEAD WEATHER ‘HOREHOUND’ RELEASED Out now One day we’ll have a new Jack White side project that won’t sound like The White Stripes with more instruments. ‘Walfgang Amadeus Phoenix’ is their best yet. a masterclass in spritely electro-rock-pop. on board alongside White. ★★★★★ MSTRKRFT ‘FIST OF GOD’ RELEASED August 3 Far more eclectic and accessible than their last hard electro release ‘The Looks’. but by now.ALBUM REVIEWS EMMY THE GREAT ‘FIRST LOVE’ RELEASED August 10 You might expect from Emma-Lee Moss’ stage name Emmy The Great and the generally upbeat and churpy nature of folk music. which is all well and good the first few times around. times have changed. Old fans. ‘Fist Of God’ marks a big step forward in terms of MSTRKRFT forging a career from their own tracks alongside their hugely successful remixing. even if they boast a few more lyrics than you might have expected. Some of backing to Moss’ delightful vocals. even mainstream electro-poppers will be able to find a route in. the one key difference. but she just about pulls it off. still need not be put off. That day isn’t today. With Moss’ incicive lyrics and cutting songs. ★★★★★ TOMMY SPARKS ‘TOMMY SPARKS’ RELEASED August 10 As is the problem of a largely album filler debut. it’s all a little boring. ‘First Love’ would be a joyous affair. Perhaps at this point another EP would have been more appropriate until Sparks has a full LP to really make his mark on the chart and not this fumbled effort.
Eventually he is forced to abandon his surrogate and exist in the real world as himself. Venditti explained when Surrogates was first published that the inspiration behind the story came from reports of people’s real lives suffering as a result of their dedication to online personas. sports a shaven head as his ‘real self’. Thankfully Bruce Willis. Until now. Haircuts aside the concept is interesting and is certainly relevant in an age when the average person spends more and more time staring at a computer screen.FILM SURROGATES RELEASED September 25 Surrogates shares some similarities with the idea behind the Matrix trilogy. Hopefully the concept will ring true amidst the action and raise Surrogates above the level of the generic sci-fi thrillers we’ve had recently. robotic representations of themselves through which they can ‘be whoever they want to be’ and live a safe existence free from harm. There hasn’t been a murder for fifteen years. In the near future. people are plugged into machines that allow them to live their lives through ‘surrogates’. 16 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . at least on paper. who at first appears to be following in the footsteps of Tom Hanks’ Robert Langdon in the bad haircut stakes. The film joins the already overcrowded genre of sci-fi conspiracy thrillers. Jonathan Mostow’s film continues the ongoing and seemingly limitless trend of comic book adaptations. Apparently someone has found a way to kill surrogates and their parent bodies simultaneously. Bruce Willis launches an investigation. which all sounds fairly promising. this time bringing Robert Venditti’s 2005-2006 work to the screen. When two surrogates are killed. but looks vaguely like a cross between iRobot and Minority Report with a bit of the Matrix thrown in for good measure. open to danger and death for the first time in years. Eagle Eye amongst the main offenders.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 17 .
and everybody always has. in which leading lady Jennifer Garner enjoys herself by insulting Gervais in a variety of situations. That much is clear from previews. Still. that film could descend into one-track comedy. naturally. are all solid. the concept itself is funny and the supporting cast. so there’s no reason to assume this will happen. This. 18 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . everybody always tells the truth. Gervais is an intelligent writer. After the warm reception of David Koepp’s Ghost Town.PREVIEWS THE INVENTION OF LYING RELEASED September 25 (USA) October 2 (UK) In the alternate reality of Ricky Gervais’ latest foray into the Hollywood mainstream. and really cement his reputation for filmmaking aside his already glowing TV credits for work on The Office and Extras. but one that seems to suit Gervais’ knack for uncomfortable. gives rise to much deadpan honesty (read: insults) and a swathe of self-deprecating humour. That is. until Mark (Gervais) breaks the trend and comes to realise the potential power of lies in a world where nobody can comprehend a mistruth. which includes new comedy go-to-guy Jonah Hill. of course. of Superbad fame. another success here could solidify Gervais as a reliable leading man on the silver screen. It’s a simple. high-concept film. dry humour. There is a risk. a project he has co-written and co-directed. but there is a danger that the concept could be worn thin rather quickly if the characters aren’t interesting enough to justify it.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 19 .
Amanda Peet provides support as his ex-wife and Danny Glover is the President of the United States. Again. There’s little in the way of dialogue. Global disaster.PREVIEWS 2012 RELEASED November 13 Should we be worried about Roland Emmerich? Surely anyone who takes such an obvious delight in obliterating humanity over and over again is worth a phone tap at least? Anyway. 20 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 . Brace yourselves for the end of the world. John Cusack stars as Jackson Curtis. with the usual Emmerich credentials. and sooner than you might expect. a writer whose family are caught up in the destruction. ‘Nuff said. November 2009. before the world gets destroyed by all manner of natural disasters. Massive budget? Check. “Mankind’s earliest civilisation warned us this day would come” we are told. Explosions? You bet. this is somewhat larger in scale. Massive special effects? Check. 2012 is coming. A story? If you only watched the trailer you could be forgiven for being unsure. we know what to expect. The last time Cusack starred as a writer he was wrestling with his inner demons inside a haunted hotel room in the under-appreciated 1408. Still. mankind struggles to survive.
PREVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 21 .
With the violent scenes and cold. and most shocking. not better. this is a blessing in disguise. four people fainted. never mind receive so much press coverage. and while he (Defoe). Eden. some will hate it. Antichrist has the power to haunt a viewer for some time and is an experience not to be taken lightly. though the rollercoaster ride might take its toll along the way. constructed. or fear the box office crippling NC-17 classification. constant gloomy ambience and remarkable focal work. Because of the way director Lars von Trier treats the narrative. only things soon start to take a turn for the worse. If the brutal violence is not too much. Where a mature mind might be able to understand and cope with a higher rated film on certain occasions. Antichrist is set apart from films toting similar scenes. The backbone to maintaining such a powerful overtone is von Trier’s ability to create unremitting tension. this is a completely different project. often classified under the ‘torture porn’ moniker. she (Gainsbourg) wakes up in hospital a month later. Antichrist shocked the film world like very few films have ever done before. Upon reaching the closing credits. Should the film be cut therefore. Coupled with the unnerving rat-a-tat of acorns falling on the roof of the couple’s forest getaway and the haunting atmosphere is complete. this is one release where the rating has to be adhered to. however. violence are frequently made. she is only just starting the turmoil. Antichrist follows an unnamed couple whose son accidentally kills himself. Certain actions no doubt bring comparison to the likes of the Hostel and Saw series. it can be all too easy to overlook what is a masterclass by cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle. Though a lot of people will not see past some of Antichrist’s most shocking scenes. and a completely different vision. Despite Antichrist’s good intentions. and uses the graphic imagery to help get its messages across. Vital to Antichrist’s success. the film is deeply rooted in reality. you’ll really feel like you’ve achieved something by sitting through the whole film. slow-motion. and likewise in von Trier’s native Denmark. After collapsing at the funeral. some will love it. From the slow-motion prologue and epilogues to the stunning forest shots. Antichrist is still not a film you can particularly enjoy. To help her understand and get to grips with her heart-wrenching anguish. In one screening. in no way glamorising the violence. but in America it is very likely distributor IFC Films will choose the “Catholic” version. This is a film that will split audiences. cinematic art at its finest. more an experience to admire. despite breathtaking performances by Defoe and Gainsbourg. the film will likely still be too much for large portions of cinema-going audiences. although it might take a second viewing to really delve into the deeper and hidden meanings. von Trier’s motives slowly become apparent as the film draws to a very rounded conclusion. and while that is pale in comparison to the 20 during a screening of 2002’s Irreversible. After winning an Oscar for his work on Slumdog Millionaire. but given the content. You’re much more of a spectator than another body in the film. Some of the action is shocking to the extreme. here often sexual. In the UK the uncut version has been passed for release. you really need to see the full edit. ★★★★★ . For all its wonder. Antichrist lay destined for infamy rather than now sitting on the brink of a worldwide release. Towards the end of the film. and has a lot to say about parenthood and modern culture’s obsession with sex. the pair have created a film that should most definitely be classed as a work of visual art.REVIEWS ANTICHRIST Premiering at this year’s Cannes Film Festival to a storm of both criticism and critical acclaim. given how cinematic audiences have grown increasingly hardened to graphic violence and dark and distressing scenes. At least not with a serious overtone. black and white prologue. it feels like it could make you jump out of your seat at any moment thanks to a simple and remarkably powerful score. no. but very few are from high profile directors and barely make a cinematic release. the overarching themes are so wickedly. and no doubt encompasses acts of violence or scenes of a sexual nature many won’t have experienced on screen before. but all should undoubtedly concede. but this is a 22 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Lars von Trier STARRING Willem Defoe & Charlotte Gainsbourg RELEASED July 24 (UK) October 23 (USA) completely different affair. to allow for a wider audience to go see the film? Without a doubt. Aside from Antichrist’s shocking sequences. Films with shocking. the former with several scenes removed and the latter uncut. Antichrist is somewhat emotionally uninvolving. it is a masterpiece. Set-up by a stunning. harsh feel to the cinematography. and Antichrist would be too much if it were the other way around. At first it’s very hard to know what to make of Antichrist. Though Antichrist was pitched to distributors at Cannes with “Catho- lic” and “Protestant” versions. alongside von Trier. to have the full effect of von Trier’s vision. it does in fact have a lot to say. the couple head out to their forest home. a professional therapist. and intelligently. and von Trier uses the scenes to shock and portray what lengths people will go to under self duress. While Antichrist isn’t necessarily a scary film. under an 18 rating. however. is in the latter stages of his grief.
REVIEWS AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 23 .
I Love You.S. girl kisses dreamy boy as the credits roll. as the female crowd flock back time and time again for each lifeless offering. (500) Days Of Summer reinvents the genre. The frustrating and frequently offensive views of both the male and female sex draw very few laughs as Heigl’s talent showcased in Knocked Up deserts her. female audiences have been lapping up the lazy rom-coms. to the numerous chick-flick clichés. The production values for The Ugly Truth are expectedly high and a decent budget certainly adds to the grandeur of the film but working with a incredibly lazy script. Abbey is forced to take on public television rising star Mike (Butler). The aforementioned (500) Days Of Summer proves rom-coms can go the extra mile and offer something different. The Ugly Truth is a film only die-hard Heigl and chick-flick fans need worry about. but with an open mind I stepped into the world of morning TV show producer Abby (Heigl). as what Heigl’s latest love affair lacks . he bets Abby that with his advice. And yet.REVIEWS THE UGLY TRUTH For a long while. once again. Upon hearing the synopsis of The Ugly Truth. True. In a last ditch attempt to save the morning programme. And even then. no doubt about it. or the poster. Bride Wars and 27 Dresses really shouldn’t be making the cut. opening weekend. but that doesn’t excuse the film’s complete lack of effort to inject even an ounce of energy. There have been very accomplished films along the way. the clichéd appeal of two attractive Hollywood stars failing to admit their obvious love is guaranteed to have a much stronger. John Michael Higgins. takes up his challenge. messing up every potential relationship before it even gets going. I always harbour a little hope the director and writers have tried to do a little more. Unlike some chick-flicks where the easy can be relatively entertaining despite being a generally awful film. If you’ve seen the trailer. uptight and controlling Abby is struggling to find love despite her stunning good looks. studios will out the chick-flicks out for some time yet. and though it’ll have a very successful long run through word of mouth. Eric Winter. the clichés are more a problem with the genre. After bickering over his rudimentary views of love and lust. sure. you can guess the ending with some confidence. and upon meeting her handsome neighbour. girl either goes after the wrong boy or the relationship with dreamy boy breaks down. Gerald Butler. and box office top spot cementing. but the likes of P. she can get any man she wants. His show The Ugly Truth offers straight up relationship advice and insights on the male psyche. her TV show is struggling for ratings. Cheryl Hines & Nick Searcy RELEASED July 24 (USA) August 7 (USA) obvious this wouldn’t be the film the push the boundaries and the generic chick-flick genre. The Ugly Truth grows boring towards the end. The Ugly Truth sadly falls a crop. and I won’t deny that for many men they remain a guilty pleasure. but with every new offering. showing up the The Ugly Truth’s plot as utterly bereft of imagination. troubled girl meets dreamy boy. Though reviews in all magazines but Cosmopolitan will tell you to stay away at all costs. Forever dreaming of the perfect man. a handful of fresh ideas and a ‘twist’ at the end that the entire audience didn’t predict upon walking into the theatre. and his mere arrival causes a stir with Abbey. Perhaps it is a little naive to think they’ll ever change. chick-flicks have been getting a free ride. it soon became fairly 24 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Robert Luketic STARRING Katherine Heigl. you can definitely do better in the screen next door. To make matters worse. as time and again. Though the Hollywood glamour might lead you along the stuttering narrative. Bree Turner.is invention. ★★★★★ . far from boundary breaking dialogue and a plot without any real connections to the real lives of the female audiences that will go to see it.
Gérard Depardieu is right at home as Jean de Florette. Played brilliantly by Vincent Cassel. whom you may remember from Eastern Promises and Derailed. As the closing credits draw in you’re RELEASED August 7 DIRECTED BY Jean-François Richet STARRING Vincent Cassel. Cécile De France. Picking up first during Mesrine’s time with the French military where he is given the job of executing tortured prisoners. Mesrine is portrayed as a brutal and menacing criminal but charming man deep beneath. even if you don’t bother with number 2. Combined with a romantic side-story that comes to an interesting. some of Killer Instinct’s hard work is undone but far from the whole package. Killer Instinct is set in the 1960s before Mesrine attracting the Public Enemy No. The film is shot with a suave style. and yet still feels satisfying enough as a sole entity. is worth the investment. from an effortless CCTV montage in the opening scene to Godfatheresque wide-angle shots. Emerging as something of a homage to classic gangster films both in its native France and across the Atlantic in Hollywood. falling somewhere between style and brawn as the action scenes slot nicely into the artistic direction. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 25 . upon his return to France he soon becomes fascinated with the gangster lifestyle. Public Enemy No. and to complete the story. Gérard Depardieu & Michel Duchaussoy greeted with a ‘what happened next’ for all the characters bar our titular criminal. Ludivine Sagnier. which is to Richet’s credit. 1. Killer Instinct sets the foundations for Richet’s second forthcoming Mesrine film. though Mesrine: Killer Instinct is based on a true story it does fall a crop to the usual gangster working his way up to the top clichés. and given its breakneck pace and edge of your seat tension. leaves it essential you catch the follow-up. charting his rise to ascendancy the wrong side of the French law. engaging in low level bank robbery and murder before going on the run with his cohorts. a gangster a couple of rungs up the ladder who works with Mesrine on several cons. Almost trumping Cassel’s great performance. and on some level at least.REVIEWS MESRINE: KILLER INSTINCT The first of a gangster double bill directed and co-written by JeanFrançois Richet retelling the life of infamous French criminal Jacques Mesrine (Cassel). Richet manages to get the audience to root for him despite his atrocious acts of violence. though somewhat peculiar end. 1 tagline.
Alongside some stunning cinematography and a fitting soundtrack. and FBI coined ‘public enemy’. Though the film is very accomplished. Stephen Dorff & Stephen Graham RELEASED Out now thrown back and forth. Led by agent Melvin Purvis (Bale). and it’s especially nice to see Christian Bale in a role without his Batman voice. Christian Bale. that portray their roles with great confidence and maturity. Dillinger became the focus of the FBI’s efforts. Michael Mann should have a masterpiece on his hands. producing a leading cast. and barely planning beyond the end of the week. backed up by the rest of Dillinger’s gang. Public Enemies immerses you in the life in the 1930s and Dillinger’s fearless nature. Dillinger was effectively public enemy number one as the FBI attempted to stop the lawlessness in Midwest America. and it does deserve credit for creating a lovable criminal in Dillinger. but somehow. Oscar-winning Marion Cotillard plays as love interest Billie Frechette with the ever reliable duo of Johnny Depp and Christian Bale. Marion Cotillard. Perhaps the film should have cut with a quicker pacing. The characters emerge on screen near fully formed and undergo minimal development throughout the film as you’re meant to know every detail about the characters before you enter the cinema to really get the most out of it.REVIEWS PUBLIC ENEMIES Set in the Great Depression of 1930s America. Robbing banks at will. ★★★★★ . Public Enemies lacks a focus and drive. Set in many of the real locations that Dillinger’s remarkable life was 26 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DIRECTED BY Michael Mann STARRING Johnny Depp. Dillinger drew sympathy from the American public for his thirst for life and good treatment of any hostage momentarily taken on robberies. despite Mann’s passion for the story. as it became his life’s mission to at last apprehend the criminal. with Public Enemies. the high production values are as you’d expect from Michael Mann and his supreme attention to detail really pay off. he doesn’t. John Dillinger (Depp). Channing Tatum. it lacks the wow factor and real depth of purpose to set it apart. however. Public Enemies tells the real life story of legendary bank robber. In the great crime wave in the 1930s. Public Enemies is an enjoyable experience but it feels like it could have been a whole lot more and another gangster classic.
you can help but wonder what a difference it would have made if the costumes were more developed and refined. Using the device at a roadside boating attraction. they don’t have the unabashed campy joy boasted by the TV show. The T-Rex and other dinosaurs feel very much separate to the action. The film feels very lethargic with gags that fall flat. Though it would have brought a different feel to the background non-human forms. The only problem. The intentional cheap look shouldn’t have cost anywhere near the $100m budget and with a sloppy and unimaginative script and faily dull and drab narrative. along with tour guide Will (McBride). Beyond the time warp idea there’s no real development to the lost soles and their adventure sems to be a lot of chasing around for no reason at all. Despite Will Ferell’s ever dependable performance and DIRECTED BY Brad Silberling STARRING Will Ferrell. a once revolutionary scientist whose obsession with time warps has destroyed his reputation and career. Land Of The Lost is the latest Will Ferrell vehicle to storm the film industry. Land Of The Lost could have been a whole lot more. unbeknownst in their own universe. here. Worse still. Performing way below expectation in its native America. Rick Marshall (Ferrell). they need to find a way to get back. touch down in the parallel universe. Similarly the CGI finds major issues fitting in. caught between two audiences. Danny McBride.REVIEWS LAND OF THE LOST Based on the 1974 television series of the same name. the script and plot are remarkably reserved as the film lacks any real sense of urgency or force. as the film drags on. when a fan of his work. Holly (Friel). Anna Friel. if you pass on Land Of The Lost in theatres you won’t be missing too much. John Boylan & Bobb’e J. Rick at last makes good on a lifetime of work. The story starts to lose its way the moment Ferrell and co. Jorma Taccone. and while in Transformers the robots really feel part of the human world. encourages him to finish his tachyon amplifier to help them travel into a parallel universe. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 27 . adapting the childrens TV show or the big screen and an R-rated comedy for fans of Will Ferrell and Danny McBride. the monstrous creatures comes across as nothing more than a bunch of moving pixels and you don’t get the sense they’re in the scene with the actors. while the costumes for the parallel universe races the Pakuni and the Sleestaks are an homage to the original series and intentionally unrealistic. Though it might yet find a cult audience on DVD. Focussing on Dr. Thompson RELEASED Out now (USA) July 29 (UK) quirky little asides. you can sadly see why Land Of The Lost struggled at the box office. they’re thrown down and endless waterfall only to awake in new world filled with dinosaurs and mysterious creatures.
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whom on a similarly downward spiral. Imagine That is far from the film to perk up Eddie Murphy’s lagging reputation. The mere concept is a little ridiculous. Optimists will tell you Imagine That is the sweet child-friendly film to pull back waning fans. After storming onto the scene in the early 1980s with a regular role on Saturday Night Live and the start of the Beverly Hills Cop series and then re-invigorating what became a period of slack roles in the late 1990s. Meet Dave and Shrek The Third. is something new. an Academy Award nomination for his performance in Dreamgirls should have been the jumping board for even greater. finds advice and inspiration from DIRECTED BY Karey Kirkpatrick STARRING Eddie Murphy. for which you would have been easily forgiven for walking out of the cinema. especially for kids. Eddie Murphy has done a good job of throwing his career away for the second time in recent years. however. Working together. Dropping Murphy in the shoes of investment banker Evan Danielson.REVIEWS IMAGINE THAT Whether he’s been trying to or not. and more serious. You might chuckle a couple of times. While this is a marked improvement on his recent horror-shows. ★★★★★ AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 29 . Evan is given market recommendations from his daughter (Shahidi). the promise is some way off being fulfilled. and the grandeur from a remarkable $55m budget is nowhere to be seen. His performance is again is hugely disap- pointing for a man widely regarded as being one of the best ever standup comedians in his heyday. young Yara Shahidi shows a lot of potential as Olivia Danielson. Imagine That. With the help apparently magical towel and three imaginary friends. but it is literally a couple. but it is not a remarkable children’s film by any stretch of the imagination. and neither does Murphy’s obsession with pulling stupid faces. a children’s film about finance. certainly is much better than Meet Dave and Norbit. To its credit. Imagine That does somehow orchestrate a closing sequence might pull a couple of heartstrings but that’s despite raising barely a care for the characters throughout everything that went before it. the often slapstick comedy hardly raises a laugh. however. but whether their heads are in the crowds is another question all together. and though it does provide some potentially funny and entertaining moments. Though Thomas Haden Church is similarly frustrating in his misplayed role. and the other a low-grade money making sell-out. Thomas Haden Church & Yara Shahidi RELEASED Out now (USA) August 14 (UK) the most unexpected of corners. Any banking quips will go straight over children’s heads and aren’t witty enough to entertain adults. The concept at least. and that’s nowhere near enough humour. success. Evan quickly works his way up to the top of the company but when the owner declares he will be leaving. he faces a fight with scheming colleague Johnny Whitefeather (Haden Church) to fill the role. Furthermore. Since then. Murphy has followed up 2006’s Oscar awards with Norbit. two of which push high of all-time worst ever movie lists.
until when he finishes the code. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ LESBIAN VAMPIRE KILLERS James Corden and Matthew Horne’s failed attempt to break cinema. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ ROBOT CHICKEN STAR WARS EP 2 Cult stop-motion sketch show Robot Chicken turns its attention to Star Wars for a second time. all dancing comedy about a mock two-piece folk band. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ HUSH Striking low budget British horror/thriller that maintains effortless suspense until the very last moment as poster re-stocker attempts to rescue his girlfriend from her truckdriving kidnapper. Cadillac Records is a solid biopic delving into the life of music exec. Zach Snyder’s offering is as good as we could have ever hoped for and hold true to the plot. For both Star Wars fans and newcomers.DVD REVIEWS CADILLAC RECORDS Though riddled with the usual clichés that hold back this genre. Very cleverly written and always superbly acted. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ KNOWING Entertaining. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS S2 The highly anticipated second season of the all singing. though poorly plotted thriller that sees Nicholas Cage decipher a secret code to predict disasters across the world. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ 30 FAN THE FIRE AUGUST 2009 DUPLICITY Romantically tinged comedy spy-thriller as two spies attempt to con their employees and each other out of a fortune. Leonard Chess and Chess Records. concludes the earth is soon to end. and once again with hilarious results. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ WATCHMEN Overly long adaptation of the classic graphic novel. Film ★★★★★ Extras ★★★★★ . only to forget who’s conning who as Duplicity builds for a blockbuster finale. starring as outcasts who go on a backpaccking trip only to be caught in a vampire infested village. but after being branded ‘unfilmable’ by Terry Gilliam.
The bands efforts rarely yield dividends but do spawn new tunes about life. Yes Man). There’s a whole host of new.com. working as prostitutes to pay off a reckless cup purchase. hilarious songs including ‘Sugalumps’: ‘All these bitches checkin’ out my britches/ Put ‘em in a trance/ When I wear track pants’ and Fashion is Danger’: ‘I’m larger than life with just a hint of lace’. Peep Show or Gavin and Stacey you’re in for a treat. Music comedy duo Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie return as the hapless musicians who left their native New Zealand for New York’s Lower East Side in a bid for world domination. who still works at the bare-bones New Zealand consulate. Over the course of the new season they resort to a variety of ridiculous and unconventional strategies in an attempt to jump-start their lives and career. AUGUST 2009 FAN THE FIRE 31 . starting up a gang to protect themselves from rappers they’ve dissed in their songs. Deadline 07/08/09. dating an Australian – a massive taboo in New Zealand and even firing Murray who has to prove to them just why he’s the man for the job. Builders C. A must have for any music and comedy fan.COMPETITION Get Ready to Folk! New Zealand’s fourth most popular folk parody duo Flight Of The Conchords are back to take on New York in the second season of their four time Emmy-nominated smash hit comedy released on DVD on 3 August by HBO Home Entertainment. If you’ve seen the BBC4 broadcast or are a fan of the comedy stylings of The Mighty Boosh. Lawyers Email your answer to competitions@fanthefiremagazine. after Bret frivolously decides that they need more than one coffee cup in their apartment.. Mel (Kristen Shaal). Dave’s Pawn Shop Commercials’ and a hilarious dance clip hidden ‘Easter Egg’. her long-suffering husband. simply answer the following question: Lead characters Jemaine and Bret used to be what before becoming musicians? A. The DVD is packed with special features including outtakes. Shepherds B. To be in with a chance of winning the season 2 box set for yourself. deleted scenes and several featurettes including a mini documentary on the band’s pursuit of fame. Familiar faces return including hapless manager Murray (Rhys Darby. the show has grown from cult to mainstream status. To celebrate the release we are giving away 3 DVD copies of Season 2. love and their pursuit of an elusive music video…. The Boat That Rocked. their obsessive Super-fan and Doug (David Costabile).
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